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Mourning Woman Statue
| On Mourning
"...why is there a long period of distress during the process of mourning the death of a loved one? Emotion researchers such as Oatley and Johnson-Laird (1987) have tried to make sense of this aspect of the function of emotions. In their thinking, based on earlier ideas by Simon (1967), one important role of emotion may be to signal to the organism that ongoing behaviour should be interrupted to take account of a conflicting goal... Sadness during bereavement... can be seen as having the function of initiating readjustment of the life goals that included the lost one. If the association was a close one, this period of reassessing or reforming goals could be lengthy."
(Mackintosh, B. (2006) 'Emotion' in SD226 Book 6: Emotions and Mind, 2nd edn, Milton Keynes, The Open University, p.72) [Also see 'Grief'.]
Death & Immortality
Grief [part of the series on Emotion]